Father’s Day Confessions: Do Americans Actually Understand Dads?

John Howard

On June 1st, we surveyed 1020 fathers in the U.S to ask about their most unwanted gifts on Father’s Day (June 21). Combined with NRF’s data, we came up with a formula to calculate exactly how much money Americans have wasted on these unwanted gifts. Here are our results:

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Top Unwanted Gifts and Expected Spending

CategoriesPercent DislikeSpending
Percent Buying
Greeting cards30%$0.8259%
Personal care28.6%$1.1525%
Gift cards21.8%$2.3844%
Automative accessories20.8%$0.8319%
Sporting Goods16.8%$0.9920%
Home Improvement15.7%$1.2221%
Tools or Appliances15.6%$1.1021%
Special Outing12.5%$2.8141%

Americans were expected to waste $5.23 billion U.S. dollars on Clothing, Books/CDs, Greeting Cards, and Personal Care.

Clothing is the most unwanted Father’s Day gifts, representing $2.58 billion U.S. dollars wasted

Despite being the most-purchased gifts, Greeting cards are voted the third-most unwanted gifts, which cost Americans $820 million U.S dollars

87.5% of Dads admitted that Special Outing is the most ideal gift, which is the only right decision among 41% of Americans that plan to purchase it.

Dads Grade Their Satisfaction on 2019 Father’s Day Gifts

Nearly 40% of Dads graded B-F for their satisfaction on receiving Father’s Day gifts in 2019

31% of Dads graded A+ for their satisfaction on receiving 2019 Father’s Day gifts

What Is Considered A Good Gift?

33.3% of Dads would prefer gifts that create special memories

While 41% of Americans plan to buy gifts that are unique or different

The Worst Gifter In The Family

27.7% of Dads agreed that sons usually give the worst Father’s Day gift in the family.

Parents are the second-worst gifter according to 27.1% of Fathers.

Daughters are the best gifters in the family because only 18.2% of dads didn’t like the gifts they got from their daughters.

Which Gender Is Likely To Disappoint Their Fathers?

Men are 14% more likely to disappoint Dads by buying Books/CDs.

Women are 9% more likely to disappoint Dads by buying Greeting Cards.

Dad’s Plan On this Year’s Father’s Day

56% of Dads would rather stay at home this Father’s Day to avoid the Covid-19

20% of Dads would choose to have a BBQ party on Father’s Day

Going to sporting events is the most unwanted activity on Father’s Day


We surveyed 1020 American Dads to ask what their most unwanted Father’s Day gifts are and some related questions.

Then we used the collected data from NRF to calculate how much Americans have wasted on these unwanted gifts

The survey was launched on MTurk with the target location set to the U.S. We chose the Approval HIT rate 95% to ensure the quality of the answer.

In our survey, we also used the qualifying question to exclude those who are not appropriate for the survey.

Fair Use Statement

Do you want to get the best gifts from everyone this Father’s day? Or do you plan to give the best gifts to your dad this Father’s day? Feel free to pass this noncommercial project to your siblings or your readers (if you have a blog or website).

Just make sure that you link back to this article so people can take in the full version of our research.


These results were rounded up based on American Dad’s thoughts on the gifts they receive on Father’s Day.
But it doesn’t mean that your Dad will dislike the exact same gifts mentioned in this article. In fact, we can guarantee that Dads still appreciate all kinds of gifts they receive on Father’s Day.

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